A curious thread links Elvis Presley to the baseball strike. Ask yourself, what makes Elvis so memorable after 25 years and the game of baseball suddenly so annoying?

Elvis went from working in an auto shop to becoming the biggest entertainment star in history in just two years, yet he didn't change much. He still said his sirs and ma'ams. As B.B. King pointed out, he did good deeds, such as playing for a black charity in segregated Memphis. He shocked sensibilities without turning his back on his values.

As Brit pointed out, he spent 18 months in the Army, and he kept to the old-time faith, recording gospel tunes to his dying day. He was achingly human, in everything from his yearning for a normal life to the poor boy's love of gaudy cars and flashy furnishings.

Baseball, in contrast, has lost its touch. Last year, 112 -- 112 -- baseball players made more on the field than Tiger Woods earned in golf tournaments. Does anyone think that even one of these guys is a better or more interesting athlete? And yet they're willing to shut down the game to get more.

They forget one thing: We pay their salaries. And a lot of fans are sick of paying small fortunes to players who don't give a rip.

Elvis poured out his heart to audiences for 23 years, and a quarter- century after his death, thousands still buy his music and flock to Graceland. Do you think anybody will do the same 25 years from now for the guys who wear baseball uniforms today?